‘Shoplifters’ – a family business on Hulu

“What defines a family?” is a question that runs through many of the films of Japan’s Hirokazu Kore-eda, from the heartbreaking abandoned children of Nobody Knows to the strained relations and recriminations of Still Walking to the loving embrace of Our Little Sister. Shoplifters (Japan, 2018) presents a family on the margins brought together by […]

What to stream: ‘Woke’ on Hulu, ‘The Duchess’ and ‘Social Dilemma’ on Netflix, ‘Noughts + Crosses’ on Peacock

Here’s what’s new and ready to stream now on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, HBO Now, video-on-demand, and other streaming services …   Inspired by the work of artist Keith Knight, “Woke: Season 1” (not rated) stars Lamorne Morris as a cartoonist on the verge of mainstream success, in part for steering clear of politics and […]

Miguel Sandoval, Spike Lee, and Ossie Davis

Spike Lee’s ‘Do The Right Thing’ on Peacock

Do The Right Thing (1989), Spike Lee’s vibrant, vital, thoroughly accomplished third feature, opens on a call to action – “Fight the Power,” shouts Public Enemy in the credits – and ends with a call to “Wake up!” Rosie Perez pumps out an aggressive shout of a dance in the opening credits, staged in front […]

Adèle Exarchopoulos and Léa Seydoux star in 'Blue is the Warmest Color,' directed by Abdellatif Kechiche

‘Blue Is the Warmest Color’ on VOD and Blu-ray/DVD

Filmmaker Abdellatif Kechiche explores the lives of outsiders looking for their place in Blue is the Warmest Color (France, 2013) an intimate love story based on a graphic novel. Thanks to Academy rules for foreign films, it wasn’t eligible for an Oscar nomination due to the timing of its French theatrical release. But it took home […]

Burt Lancaster is the ‘Birdman of Alcatraz’ on Amazon Prime Video

Filmmaker John Frankenheimer earned his first major big screen success with Birdman of Alcatraz (1962), his third theatrical feature and his second collaboration with producer/star Burt Lancaster (they would make five films together all told). Lancaster delivers an angry, brooding performance as real life criminal Robert Stroud, a violent killer who developed into an internationally […]

Natalie Portman, Hugo Weaving, Stephen Rea, Stephen Fry, and John Hurt star in the film adapted from the Alan Moore graphic novel

‘V For Vendetta’ – Fighting tyranny on HBO Max

V For Vendetta (2005) – “People shouldn’t be afraid of their government. The government should be afraid of the people.” His name is nowhere to be seen in the credits but this futuristic thriller about an authoritarian government out of 1984 and a lone revolutionary who takes them on comes from Alan Moore’s acclaimed graphic […]

What to stream: ‘The Assistant’ on Hulu, ‘Radioactive’ on Amazon, ‘Fear City’ and ‘Last Dance’ on Netflix

Here’s what’s new and ready to stream now on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, HBO Now, video-on-demand, and other streaming services …   Julia Garner plays a personal assistant to a powerful executive (unnamed and largely unseen yet a provocative presence) in “The Assistant” (2019, R), a drama of power dynamics and abuse in a toxic […]

Rachel McAdams, Michael Keaton, Mark Ruffalo, Liev Schreiber, and Brian d'Arcy James in 'Spotlight,' directed by Tom McCarthy.

Oscar-winning ‘Spotlight’ on Netflix

Winner of the Academy Awards for Best Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay, as well as Best Ensemble Cast by the Screen Actors Guild, Best Screenplay by the Writer’s Guild of America, Best Picture by the American Film Institute, and scores of other awards from professional and critics organizations, Spotlight (2015) is the kind of film that […]

What to stream: Broadway phenomenon ‘Hamilton’ debuts on Disney+, ‘Anne Frank’ and ‘The Babysitter’s Club’ on Netflix

Here’s what’s new and ready to stream now on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, HBO Now, video-on-demand, and other streaming services …   Celebrate July 4 with Lin-Manuel Miranda’s “Hamilton” (2020, PG-13), a filmed version of the Tony- and Pulitzer-winning Broadway phenomenon. The film was shot in 2016 with the original cast in front of a […]